Matt Ryan has, over the course of a ten year career, averaged about 26 touchdowns, 13 interceptions, and 4,180 yards per season. Time (and potentially a ring) will tell if those averages get him into Canton, but he’s been anywhere from steady to great throughout his career.
When you’re trying to come up with his numbers for this year, you might find yourself tempted to draw on those career averages, but Ryan’s recent wild swings statistically make that a tricky proposition. He’s coming off a 20 touchdown, 12 interception year that was both a little disappointing and very unlucky, especially after a 2016 season that saw him toss 38 touchdowns against just seven interceptions. With no one quite sure what Steve Sarkisian’s going to bring to the table in 2018, putting money down on Ryan’s final line feels risky, even if everyone seems pretty confident he’s going to return to form a bit.
That’s why it’s a little surprising to see Ryan, coming off a statistically mediocre season, projected to bounce back to such a small degree. Prop bets at betonline.ag for Ryan have the O/U on his number of touchdowns at 24.5, which is under his career average, plus 12 interceptions, which is also right around but slightly under his career average. The yardage lands at 4,175, which would be his lowest total since 2010. I’d be stunned if he didn’t easily make the over in everything except maybe interceptions.
These numbers stand in stark contrast to the increasing number of glowing projections for Ryan in 2018 from NFL pundits, who see Sark’s rookie year as a hiccupy one, and Ryan’s absurdly poor interception luck as an outlier. I’d actually feel pretty good about projecting Ryan to surpass that touchdown total (if only modestly) and very good about him exceeding that yardage mark, given that he’s done so in each of the last seven seasons.
What say you? Would you go over or under on these numbers?